United States Department
of Agriculture • Rural Development
USDA ANNOUNCES $71,000 GRANT FOR GOGEBIC COUNTY WEATHER RADIO TRANSMITTER
LANSING, March 13, 2007- USDA Rural Development Director for Michigan Gene DeRossett today announced a $71,642 grant for a weather radio transmitter in Gogebic County.
“This will significantly improve safety for Upper Peninsula residents,” said DeRossett. “It will alert people earlier about dangerous weather conditions, allowing them to take appropriate action.”
The transmitter will extend the coverage of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration Weather Radio All Hazards (NWR) early warning system and is part of a $415,000 initiative that affects seven rural communities in five states. The grant will pay for a 300 watt dual transmitter antenna, shelter, backup generator, and ice bridge in Marenisco. It will be administered by the Gogebic County Office of Emergency Services.
The NWR is a nationwide network of radio stations broadcasting 24 hours a day from National Weather Service offices to alert people of approaching dangerous weather and other emergencies, including natural, environmental and public safety alerts. Thousands of people die or lose property annually because they did not know soon enough about hazards, disasters or emergencies.
The NWR covers all major metropolitan areas and many smaller cities and towns. The Weather Radio Transmitter grant program helps provide coverage to those rural areas that do not have NWR coverage or are poorly covered.
The grants awarded today are funded using residual funds from grant projects that were completed under budget. Today’s award brings to 91 the total number of grants awarded to electric and telecommunications cooperatives, non-profit groups and state and local governments covering 100 sites in 26 states and Puerto Rico.
USDA Rural Development's mission is to deliver programs in a way that will support increasing economic opportunity and improve the quality of life of rural residents. As a venture capital entity, Rural Development provides equity, liquidity, and technical assistance to finance and foster growth in homeownership, business development, and critical community and technology infrastructure. Further information on rural programs is available at a local USDA Rural Development office or by visiting USDA's web site at http://www.rurdev.usda.gov/
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